Giorgia Lupi: Bringing A Human Touch To Data

Giorgia Lupi: Bringing A Human Touch To Data
Design

In the lead-up to our PSFK 2017 conference, we look back at key speakers from past years. Dear Data designer challenges audience to tell personal stories through data

PSFK
  • 10 may 2017

Leading up to our PSFK 2017 conference on May 19, we are looking back at some of the key speakers from years past. Get your tickets today!

While data can have the reputation for being cold and impersonal, Giorgia Lupi uses her company, Accurat, to tell data-based stories and help people access data from a design perspective. During her talk at our recent PSFK 2016 conference in New York City, Lupi shared her approach to bringing data and design together to open new perspectives and catalyze conversations on a new level.

When it comes to visualizing data, Lupi identified a common problem with her clients. Companies often want to throw technology at a problem without taking the time to think about the challenge.

“It’s so easy to lose track of what numbers really mean. We try to look at data problems with a design approach from the early stage. We take a design approach to focus on framing the right questions and reconnect numbers to what they stand for: people.”

In order to help make data more human, Lupi and fellow information designer Stefanie Posavec began their Dear Data project. Over 52 weeks, Lupi and Posavec exchanged a correspondence of hand-drawn post cards across the ocean and got to know each other through their data. As the cards made their way between Lupi in New York to Posvec in London, the postcards arrived with all the scuff marks of this analog medium.

The format of the project was relatively simple: the front of the card could not contain text and the back would contain the legend. In order to preserve the pleasure of discovering postcards in the mail, they did not send each other digital scans.

Giorgia Lupi
Privacy: Left, Giorgia Lupi. Right, Stefanie Posavec

“During a time when everyone talks about VR and big data, of course we did small data and physical postcards.”

During the project, Lupi and Posavec forced themselves to find different ways to use data to tell stories about themselves. “What interests us the most is the composition of the portrait of the other person through the fragments of her nature,” explains Lupi, “Every week, we get to add little pieces to the puzzle of the other person through her data.” Because of this nuance, Dear Data is more of a personal documentary than a quantified project.

Dear Data Giorgia Lupi

During the conference, Lupi also created a special activity for attendees to track their own data. People were invited to tell their own PSFK conference stories by sharing whom they met, where they came from, how many cups of coffee they drank and more through creating their own designs.

Lupi hopes her project will help people see data as less daunting. “It’s often difficult to get people to understand big data if they don’t fully understand what data is in the first place,” she explains. In a sense, through each postcard and each doodle, brought data down to a personal level and created a new language through visualizations. In an age where data is proliferating and numerous apps can collect and visualize data for anyone with a smartphone, Lupi encourages the audience to think about what these numbers actually mean and use them to tell their own personal stories.

Accurat

Leading up to our PSFK 2017 conference on May 19, we are looking back at some of the key speakers from years past. Get your tickets today!

While data can have the reputation for being cold and impersonal, Giorgia Lupi uses her company, Accurat, to tell data-based stories and help people access data from a design perspective. During her talk at our recent PSFK 2016 conference in New York City, Lupi shared her approach to bringing data and design together to open new perspectives and catalyze conversations on a new level.

+Arts & Culture
+cities
+Culture
+data
+Design
+Europe
+postcards
+PSFK 2016
+Public
+technology
+UK
+USA

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